Expedition to the Mithril Vaults
The Mithril Vaults
In the time before the dark age, the Mithril Vaults were a small, powerful mountain dwarf kingdom beneath the Dragonspine Mountains. Its power was derived from the wealth brought in from the rich veins of mithril being mined in the vaults, but the kingdom never expanded to a great population, with more dwarves choosing to live in Silver Spires and the Golden Halls.
The last king of the Mithril Vaults was Ragnar Silverstone II.
At the height of its power, the mighty black dragon Acktherion led armies of twisted kobolds against the surface settlements around the entrance to the Vaults. The dragon and its allies were eventually destroyed, but at the cost of those settlements and the sealing of the gates to the surface. Many defenders were lost to the dragons forces and this weakened the kingdom against the further predations of evil from the Underdark.
Emboldened by the weaker defences of the Vaults, troglodytes and the like wore down the defenders on the borders. Pride prevented the dwarven people from calling on neighbouring kingdoms, who were also experiencing the beginnings of the rise of darkness, and increasingly the dwarves turned to strange and arcane allies and defences to try and maintain their kingdom.
The last refugees to find their way to Silver Spires spoke of battles in the halls between undead and foul aberrations, of sinister and mysterious spellcasters battling against those who had turned against nature with dark pacts. While maps still give direction between Silver Spires and the Mithril Vaults, the roads of the Underdark have been eroded for generations, and refugees deliberately destroyed paths to prevent pursuit of the evil left behind.